Our next general membership meeting is Apr 11 at the Science & Discovery Center, 308 Airport Rd, Panama City.
Program is "Costa Rica Adventure" by Anne Ake author of Turning Turtles in Tortuguero: Stories From the Origins of Sea Turtle Research, present an account of the eco-tour made with the members of St Andrews Bay Resource Management Association.
THINGS TO LOOK FORWARD TO:
April 16 – Ft. Pickens – Meet at the Publix on Panama City Beach Parkway at the far west end at the “Y”. Bring your a picnic lunch. Entry fee to Ft. Pickens is $15 per car. National Park Pass works if you have one - Norm Capra
Earth Day 2016. Bay County Audubon will be hosting a booth at the Earth Day festivities at McKenzie Park on April 9th. This is a change from the previously advertised date of April 23rd! For more information or if you can give us a hand, please contact Ron Houser at 763-7485.
BCAS BACK YARD BIRD COUNT
By Jim Miller
Are you looking for a good way to increase your birding skills and have fun at the same time? Each year the Bay County Audubon Society has an open invitation to anyone who wants to participate in what we call the annual Back Yard Bird Count. The count begins each year on 1 January and runs through the 31st of December. There is only one simple rule: Count any bird you see or hear in your yard, or see or hear from your yard. (NOTE: You may also choose a location other than your yard, such as a local park you may frequent, etc.) Keep a list throughout the year and then report the results to me at email@example.com, attention Jim Miller.
This is a great way to increase your birding skills, particularly if you are a new or relatively new birder. If you have trouble identifying a bird, you can start by visiting the BCAS website: http:baycountyaudubon.org and look for the link “Need a bird ID?”
I have had more than one person comment that “I couldn’t possibly win this competition, so I don’t keep a yard list”. Please remember that each yard is different and obviously some yards are almost always going to produce a higher species count than others. So the only competition should be an internal one in your own yard, from one year to another.
Many participants keep a running yearly species count, along with the date each species is seen. Doing so allows you to see not only how your yearly totals may change (hopefully increase), but also see which species continue to visit your yard each year, and what time of year they show up, especially the migratory birds. It also helps you to narrow down what to look for at any particular point in the year, based on previous year’s sighting dates.
So here are the results (in alphabetical order) from the ten participants for 2015. NOTE: species count is the first number; the number in parentheses is the difference from 2014, if reported.
The Bentons 38 (+4); Mary Jo Capra 68 (+4); Norm Capra 59; Emily Ellis 79 (-7); Ron Houser 51 (+0);
Richard Ingram 91 (-18); Neil Lamb 124 (+4); Bill McCandliss 76 (-19); Tony Menart 58 (-2); Jim & Beth Miller 114 (+2).
Some highlighted birds reported include: Alder Flycatcher, Blackpoll Warbler, Blue-headed Vireo, Cliff Swallow, Dark-eyed Junco, Louisiana Waterthrush, Magnificent Frigatebird, Orange-crowned Warbler, Peregrine Falcon, Pine Siskin, Veery, Warbling Vireo, White-winged Dove, Willow Flycatcher, Worm-eating Warbler, Yellow-billed Cuckoo.
Won’t you join the fun for 2016?